Planet Fitness celebrates opening in Greenville

GREENVILLE – For years, Pat Schafer and Julian Monterosso had been searching for a way to venture into the Danish Festival City, eager to share their passion for exercise and better health with a smaller community.

Members of the Planet Fitness staff and ownership, joined by community member and city officials, celebrate the grand opening of the company’s new location in Greenville with a ribbon-cutting ceremony Thursday. – DN Photo | Cory Smith

On Thursday, the business partners did just that, celebrating the grand opening of their ninth Planet Fitness location.

The co-owners, joined by employees, community members, city officials and plenty of customers working away on treadmills and elliptical machines, celebrated the opening of the gym, which now occupies the former JCPenney located at 300 S. Greenville West Drive that closed in the summer of 2020.

According to Schafer, the pair had long been looking at Greenville as a potential location for the fitness center – now one of more than 2,400 Planet Fitness locations globally.

“Honestly, we have tried to get into the Greenville market for a while and we actually thought we were going to get into the old Kmart building, that was our original idea,” he said. “We had looked at different properties, even the Jorgi’s building, but when the JCPenney became available, we became really excited. It’s one of the better spaces we have found to go into. We think it’s a great location. There wasn’t a ton of work that needed to be done to start our ‘Planetizing.’ “

Schafer said Planet Fitness as a company has a goal to reach 4,500 locations, and part of that plan now involves creating small-markets such as Greenville.

With more than 80 cardio machines, the new Planet Fitness gym in Greenville, located at 300 S. Greenville West Drive at the former JCPenney location, places a focus on a “judgment-free zone” throughout its gym. – DN Photo | Cory Smith

In opening the business, Schafer said they will also employ between 12 to 15 employees, mixed between part-time and full-time.

“Especially in a community like Greenville, we try to bring in people that live and work in Greenville so we can relate to the community better,” he said. “Greenville is a market we identified several years back as a small market, to try and find an opportunity to put a Planet Fitness I think, overall, the messaging and the value that Planet Fitness brings, is great for Greenville. We emphasize having a judgment-free zone. We want it to be a clean and comfortable space for anyone high school-aged coming in with their parents all the way to retirees coming in and walking on a treadmill during the winter to get some activity. Obviously, from a value perspective, we offer amenities that a number of the smaller gyms aren’t able to, but also at a very affordable price. “

With that judgment-free zone, Schafer said Planet Fitness caters to novice and casual gym users.

“People that are heavy bodybuilders, they most likely are not going to have what they need at a Planet Fitness,” he said. “We don’t have the heavier weights. There’s a big stigma about people standing in front of the mirror, lifting heavy weights, so that’s why we’re really heavy on the cardio – we have 80-plus pieces of cardio machines.

Honestly, 35% to 45% of our members are first-time gym members. This clean, comfortable atmosphere that we bring to the area hopefully attracts people that aren’t used to working out. “

The Greenville Planet Fitness Location operates with a 24/5 model, meaning its open 24 hours a day, Monday through Thursday, with the gym closing at 9 pm on Friday and the open from 7 am to 7 pm on Saturdays and Sundays.

Memberships starts at $ 10 per month (during promotional periods), with an additional “Black Card” membership also available at $ 22.99 a month.

Located in Greenville’s former JCPenney store at 300 S. Greenville West Drive, the city’s newest gym, Planet Fitness, celebrated its grand opening Thursday. – DN Photo | Cory Smith

“The $ 10 rate includes access to the Greenville location, all the equipment, access to certified trainers, locker rooms – that’s all a part of the $ 10,” Schafer said. “For the Black Card membership, you have access to any Planet Fitness location and you can bring a guest any time.

Black Card members also receive access to the gym’s Black Card spa, which includes tanning beds, hydro massage and massage chairs.

In welcoming the new business to the community, Greenville Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Paul Sischo said he believes the new gym is a perfect fit for the city.

“Since 1947, the Greenville Area Chamber of Commerce has contributed toward a vibrant economy by partnering with like-minded businesses to accomplish more than we could by ourselves,” he said. “We’re always glad to see new businesses open in our town. We’re excited to have Planet Fitness in Greenville. It says a lot about Planet Fitness and Greenville that they have chosen to invest in our community. We look forward to witnessing the effect they will have on Greenville for years to come. “

Planet Fitness

Location: 300 S. Greenville West Dr.

Hours: 24 hours a day Monday through Thursday, with the gym closing at 9 pm on Friday and 7 am to 7 pm on Saturdays and Sundays.

Membership: $ 10 per month (during promotional periods), with an additional Black Card membership also available at $ 22.99 a month.

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